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Directed by: Jaume Balaguero
Written by: Jaume Balaguero and Fernando De Felipe
Rated PG-13 for disturbing images, intense terror sequences, thematic elements and language.
40 years ago something went terribly wrong in a secluded house on a Spanish estate. Having remained vacant ever since, an unassuming family decides to move into the house. But when strange things begin to happen the family is left wondering the cause off all the unexplained horror. Will they become the next victims of the house and its darkness? Where does the darkness come from? Is there anyway to stop the horror that is trying so hard to be unleashed? The house is full of hidden secrets, a horrifying past and inconceivable evil that work against its benefactors from the moment they move in.
One would assume to investigate the reason a house would stay empty for so many years, yet no one has dared to ask the question in regards to the abandoned house on the Spanish estate. It seems there's something evil that awaits the unsuspecting family that moves in to this 'house of horror'. With grandfather Rua (Giancarlo Giannini) having been so helpful to find this house for his son and his family, it is a wonder his treasure hasn't already been discovered. A wonder that, perhaps, was meant to stay a wonder and nothing more.
With all the details attended to, Rua's son Mark and his family will occupy the house. Mark (Iain Glen) is a mentally disturbed man on the brink of another violent breakdown. As a result, he has procured the help of a doctor to oversee his health during his stay at the Spanish home. With his wife, Maria (Lena Olin), in complete denial of her husband's mental instability, she begins to absorb herself in egocentric interests that leave her servitude as mother and wife wanting more. Mark and Maria's children, Regina (Anna Paquin) and Paul (Stephan Enquist), seem to be the only ones aware of the paranormal activity in the house that forewarns of something more evil to come.
With Paul waking up each morning with fresh bruises, Maria continues to turn her head. Paul's bruises however, are not the result of typical childhood rumbles, and he begins to confide in his older sister Regina's, warning her that there might be more to the house than people can see, including the darkness that is. eating his pencils? In addition to eaten pencils, Paul's father Mark begins tearing into the walls, alleging that he was instructed to do so by a certain denying member of the family. But if it wasn't the family, then who was it that was taunting Mark to destroy the house? Eventually Marks antics lead him to discover a creepy portrait and old record player, which upon discovery begins to play on its own. Needless to say Regina is a little disturbed by the unnatural events and confronts her mother who of course refuses to listen. In despair, Regina confides in her boyfriend Carlos, and together the two set out to unravel the mystery behind the dark house and its paranormal activity.
It seems the family's stay at the inhospitable house is harboring a tension between building and guests. With a 40 year old secret that is somehow connected to a solar eclipse, an unusual phenomenon that occurs every 40 years, it seems the house may reveal more to the guests than they bargained for as the upcoming solar eclipse steadily approaches.
But the longer it takes Regina and Carlos to uncover the terrifying hiThe story of the house, the greater advantage the house gains as the darkness begins to take over and grow in strength. Moreover, it seems Paul is the only family member who can physically see the ghosts of six dead children who are drawing some deadly pictures involving the current inhabitants. As Regina discovers the existence of a seventh child that escaped the house 40 years ago, Regina decides the answer to the house's horror lies with the sole survivor. But where is he now? What's more, it seems the 'house' might also be seeking the seventh child, needing him to fulfill some undefined role in the reign of terror.
Meanwhile the father's raving fits uncover one clue after another, this time having discovered a very large symbol like a cultic demonic ring in the middle of the floor he has begun to tear up. Ultimately the movie comes to a climactic evening of gore, and fright, and of course, darkness! With the next solar eclipse on its way, will the family make it out of the house alive, or will the demonic forces prevail?
With a mixture of "Poltergeist", "The Shining", "Hellraiser", and "The Sixth Sense" elements, the intensely suspenseful body of the film avenges the slow beginning. The unconventional ending will leave you either hating the film, or loving it.
Regina, played by Anna Paquin... the protagonist, older sister, and main caregiver of her brother who is constantly being beaten. Regina is the one who decides to face the demons and discover what is behind the 'house of horror'.
Paul, played by Stephan Enquis... the boy with the power to see the ghost in the house, and the fortitude to withstand their beatings.
Maria, played by Lena Olin... the self-centered woman in denial of the truth behind the horrors of the house and its uninvited inhabitants.
Mark, played by Iain Glen... the mentally disturbed father whose psychosis is apparently triggered by more than the eye can see.
Albert Rua, played by Giancarlo Giannini... the caring yet auspicious Grandfather whose affections question an ulterior motive.
Carlos, played by Pele Martinez... Regina's helpful boyfriend whose aiding efforts might get him into trouble before he can do any good.